Generally speaking, I suck at the whole "gift" thing. Really. I don't know when I was supposed to take the "how to choose a gift" class in life, but I obviously skipped it in favor of a trip to the doughnut store or something... And, with everything else going on in life, time fell away from me faster than I could stop it. I hate waiting until the last minute (or later) for gifting, though you wouldn't know it, because that is usually when I end up doing it.
Some people would say that because I end up waiting so late, it shows that I don't care. I care very deeply. I just suck, and that's all there is to it. I missed the part where men get trained on taking their kids out to buy gifts for Mother's Day, Valentine's Day, Birthdays, and Christmas. I always hope to do better each year, yet, I never seem to.
This year was the worst, in my book. But, at the very last hour, I had a brain-storm. I remembered the talking photo frames we have. Unopened, untouched. Perfect. I took the kids into another room and had them record a message to their mother, each child recording into their own picture. Emily's is soft, barely audible. Tyler's sounds like a Darth Vader imitation (those are his own words!), yet when I asked if they wished to re-record, they both said no. I even prodded, begged them to redo their recordings, but they both refused. I am hoping they will record new messages throughout the years - that would be cool, I think... Oh, and Emily and I ate breakfast in bed with Shan, too. :-)
Shan loved the pictures and frames. She would have loved hand-made cards from the kids. It's the little things that count. I'm lucky, because she could be ripping my head off instead.....
My mother? We bought my mother a Polaroid digital photo frame and pre-loaded it with several pictures. She thought it was the coolest thing ever (my mother easily has more than a hundred pictures on display in the living room alone)! Shan and her siblings bought her Mom a new digital camera (very badly needed!!).
After Emily took her bath, we climbed up in her bed to read part of her bedtime story. Before we started, though, she told me that she didn't want to sleep in her bed. I told her it would be okay for her to fall asleep. With a tear rolling down her cheek, she said, "But if I fall asleep in my bed, I might not wake up...." Choking back my own tears, I assured her that if she fell asleep, I would come get her and put her in our bed before I fell asleep.
Losing Dad has affected us all in ways we still don't realize.... I emailed one of his co-workers in Iraq, and part of her reply included:
We still listen for your dad’s whistles, horn blowing to come down the empty halls ...
Mom and Dad would have been in Scotland today.
We have so many things we think about, so many we try NOT to think about, so many that we can't help but to think about... The thing that crosses my mind the most is just how much I miss my Dad, and realizing just how much I will miss my Mom (not that she's going anywhere anytime soon, I hope!!)... I hope I make the most of every day I have with all of my family.
Okay, this post should have come with a warning that it would cause us really emotional people to be even more emotional. I can't as well as you can't imagine a world without your mom. She is everything to me. Did you know that I was the only one that walked down the aisle in your mom and dad's wedding that was crying? I didn't want her to leave me! I wasn't mad at your dad for taking her away, and I wasn't mad that she was getting married. I was scared to be alone with grandma! lol. I always had wished that your mom was my mom when I was little. She taught me to write my name, my colors, how to tie my shoes, and took me everywhere. I went to a high school dance when I was 18 mos. old! That's why I spent every weekend and every summer at your house when I was growing up. Your mom and dad were always great to me. I will miss the nuttiness of your dad emensely. I can't imagine being without your mom. Just make every moment count. Please take care of her. I am so worried that she will not take care of herself now. I know she is very sad and depressed. She is napping alot so she doesn't think about stuff. Please make sure she eats good. Maybe have her come down for dinner more often or something........Love and mIss ya. Sorry to ramble on.ReplyDelete